Communion Season Closes

The Congregation expressed its thanks to God for another pleasant and encouraging Communion season which ran from Thursday 15th March to the Lord’s Day 18th March.

On Thursday the neighbouring Minister Reverend Andrew Allan spoke on “The Great Catch” recorded in Luke 5. Providentially studies in Luke continued when the presiding Minister for the rest of the weekend (Reverend Raymond Kemp) took his message for Friday from Luke 8, regarding the woman with the issue of blood,  and allowing the congregation to look more closely at “The Faith that Heals“.

On Saturday, prior to the members being given their communion tokens, the congregation again gathered under the preaching of God’s Word and heard a powerful message regarding the saints communion with Christ, taking the Song of Solomon chapter 2 as his focus allowing those under the word to meditate on “The provisions of the Apple Tree“.

When the Lord’s Day arrived, Glasgow had been hit with a flurry of snow which had left road conditions near the Partick Congregation particularly dangerous. It was decided that their services would be cancelled and the congregation invited to join with Knightswood. This lead to a very encouraging turnout.

Those who were able to get out were treated to two fine sermons. Firstly, the congregation was commanded to behold the Lord Jesus Christ, as Mr Kemp laboured on the text “Behold the Man” (John 19:5) while in the evening a challenging message was delivered from Psalm 103. This saw many from the East End of the city join with the congregation.

While much thanks was due to the visiting Ministers and those who behind the scenes who had made the church comfortable, it was pressed home that the real thing that had to be done was that the Lord was to be thanked for his goodness. The evening service is suitably a challenging one then “Remembering to bless the Lord“.

After the evening service, Reverend Kemp spoke of the Lord’s Work in his own life. Despite having been an English teacher, he quipped that he would be providing geography lessons to the Minister of our Congregation after a discussion of the intricacies of the geography of Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.

Mr Kemp asked that the Congregation would remember his own congregation in prayer. Rather than asking for money or advertising – Mr Kemp asked that we would seek for the Spirit to work.

Reverend Raymond Kemp labours in the Isle of Skye. In the congregation of Kilmuir & Stenscholl (Staffin) which has greatly changed since the days where Reverend Kenneth Macleod recorded “I saw so many young people present and realised what an influence our Church has got in this place”.

In Knightswood, and in Staffin, our only hope and confidence is placed in the Lord. It is by his grace that the Kingdom shall be built. Indeed, as Mr Kemp has previously declared to the Free Church School in Theology: the Lord Jesus Christ shall build his church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

The Congregation in Staffin maintains a twitter account @StaffinFCC which posts edifying and uplifting content.

Southern Presbytery Colloquium

As announced on the denominational website the Southern Presbytery hoped to make use of the Knightswood building to hold a Colloquium on Saturday 20th January 2018. This went ahead and was enjoyed by all who attended.

The term “colloquium” indicates that the material was pitched at an academic level.

At the Colloquium 2 papers were given and a sermon was preached, with a time of fellowship between papers.

Beginning at 10am a Paper  on: ‘Musical Instruments in Worship?’ was given by Reverend E. Trevor Kirkland, Minister in Ballyclare & Doagh.

Then at 11:30am a second Paper  ‘Christ and the Covenant’ was given by Reverend William Macleod.

Tables were set up in the Church to allow people to eat a packed lunch and after a few cups of tea the meeting continued with a sermon from Reverend Andrew Allan on Revelation 2:10 entitled  ‘Be Faithful’

Presbytery Lecture: Reformation Day

The Southern Presbytery of the Free Church of Scotland (Continuing) held a public lecture in the Knightswood Free Church building on 31st October 2017 – marking 500 years since the great Protestant Reformer Martin Luther kick-started the Protestant Reformation.  The talk by Reverend John J Murray is available on the denominational website.

Luther, used by God to great effect, is perhaps fairly well known by name – but increasingly people do not appreciate the great benefits he brought to the Christian church. Being used by God to encourage the recovery of the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

During recent weeks the congregation has benefited from a closer examination of Reformation Principles. Looking at the “Five Solas” of the Protestant Reformation. As a congregation we have examined  “Sola Scriptura“; “Sola Fide“; “Sola Gratia“; “Solus Christus” and “Soli Deo Gloria” under the preaching of Reverend William Macleod.

Communion Season Closes

On Thursday 14th September, 2017, the congregation of Knightswood began its communion season. The Reverend Iain H. Murray preached from Romans 8. We will shortly share the audio of the sermon, provided there are no technical issues.

Reverend Murray is perhaps best known to the youngest generation of Christians for having written a biography of Baptist Pastor John MacArthur, and to older generations as the one who brought to light the diary of Reverend Kenneth MacRae. He has written many books and served as editor of the Banner of Truth magazine.  He is a former minister of the Free Church of Scotland.

At the time of the division of the Free Church in 2000, Mr Murray authored along with Murdoch Murchison the book “When Justice Failed in Church and State” which available for free on the denominational website. 

On Friday 15th through to the Lord’s Day (Sunday) 17th September the preacher was the Reverend David Fraser, formerly of Shettleston Free Church in the east end of the city.  Although recently retired, Mr Fraser keeps up a busy preaching schedule and remains a pastor and preacher to many. We would similarly hope to provide links to the sermons when they are available.

Many guests from neighbouring congregations attended in support of our services and a fellowship on Sabbath evening saw Reverend Fraser speak of God’s gracious dealings with him in his own life, having ministered both word and sacrament, the word of testimony.

The Covenant of Grace

As part of our studies in the Larger Catechism we have addressed the covenant of grace under the Old and New Testaments.

Have you considered before how different the Worship of the Old Testament was compared to that which we are used to? Three times a year, adults had to go to Jerusalem. Foods were termed clean or unclean. Death in the family or disease placed a complicated burden on families. But, was salvation any different? Was salvation achieved by keeping of rules and regulations? No! Or as the Minister puts it “[that is] totally wrong…by works nobody can be saves”.

You can find the administration of the Covenant of Grace in the Old Testament in this sermon and compare it to how that Covenant is administered today in the New Testament.

Prayer

Recently people have been in touch through this blog regarding the state of the Church of Scotland, but we are thankful that the Church of Scotland is not the entire Church in Scotland. There are still faithful witnesses being raised up in other denominations. In his last Editorial in the ‘The Witness’ magazine, the Minister of the Congregation stressed that even the conservative and orthodox denominations are deserving of God’s judgement. We wish to look at ourselves and to encourage prayer to God for his mercy towards us for Christ’s sake.

However, many recognise the power of prayer and have advised of a certain routine that guarantees an answer to prayer. It is first of all important to establish what prayer is, the Westminster Shorter Catechism (citing Scripture Proofs: Psalm 10:17; Psalm 32:5-6; Psalm 62:8; Psalm 103:1-5; Psalm 136;  Daniel 9:4-19; Matthew 7:7-8; John 16:23-24; Philippians 4:6; 1 John 1:9 and 1 John 5:14) gives the following answer to the question “What is prayer?”: “Prayer is an offering up of our desires unto God for things agreeable to his will in the name of Christ with confession of our sins and thankful acknowledgement of his mercies.”

The best example of a prayer life is that of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and this subject was addressed recently in this sermon, and as a church we are in great need of prayer – it is the greatest need of the church.  We need to remember there are reasons that prayers are not answered and we can look to examples of prayers being answered in Scripture.

Nine years ago, the Minister addressed the subject of “Prayer” in a 66 minute talk. It considered that the Christian’s life begins with prayer and that prayer is a feature of Christian life. This can be downloaded or listened to on sermonaudio. One of the best helps in prayer, the talk points out, is to read the Psalms and pray the Psalms. Or to vocalise even our private prayers.

Once we understand what prayer is we can look to the Bible to guide us in the content of our prayers. We can look to other helps and resources. The Catechism offers development on each petition of the Lord’s Prayer. Too often today prayer lists being read out are the substitute for prayers. Study the Bible’s prayers and look to the helps of prayer produced by former generations.

In terms of encouragement to pray, one of the Elders of the Knightswood Free Church (Continuing), Reverend John J Murray, wrote an article encouraging us to pray for revival. It is perhaps a needful read for all who have a concern for the decline of Christian religion in Scotland.